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Monday, March 09, 2009


by Robert Stewart

– for Ralph

Newspapers are so quiet,
I can’t help respecting that.
At most, the sheets luff
and crackle when turning
directly onto something
like wind in our throats,
then regain composure.

Even the two-inch banner,
F O R E C L O S U R E S,
turns its back respectfully
to a page with my friend’s
photo beside his obituary,
and gives me time, there,
to think about him.

Robert Stewart’s books include Outside Language: Essays (finalist for PEN Center USA Awards for 2004, and winner of the Thorpe Menn Award) and Plumbers (poems), and others. He is co-editor of the collection New American Essays (New Letters/BkMk Press, 2006), and editor of New Letters magazine, which won a 2008 National Magazine Award.